Do you like free coffee, free wifi, and a welcoming, friendly environment to hang out and get some studying done? If you said yes, (and I don’t see why you wouldn’t) go visit Front Porch Cafe. This completely free and volunteer run coffee house, hangout and study space is a must visit.
Located conveniently behind Cal Poly’s health center, next to the Newman Catholic Center, Front Porch Cafe is perfect to visit in between classes. Walk in, say hello to the incredibly friendly volunteers, grab some free coffee, kick back and relax. The building features a community-centered downstairs area that is usually bustling with lighthearted conversation, filled with sunlight pouring through the large windows, and has the rich aroma of coffee. The serve-yourself coffee bar has espresso, coffee, tea and all the fixins.
First year communications major Abby Eelsing has been coming to Front Porch since the beginning of the year.
“I love working downstairs because it is so friendly and open. It is perfect for when I have a group project or have some busy work to get done. You can walk freely, take your shoes off, spread out your stuff and feel relaxed.”
Looking for a more secluded and quiet spot to crank out that essay or cram for finals? Head to upstairs to “The Library” or the upstairs back room where individual desks allow for a more studious environment and donated study aids and books fill a large bookshelf.
Molly Dowd, a first year sociology student, comes to Front Porch for multiple reasons.
“For one, free coffee is always a must. Plus there is so much room to study. If I want to study privately I can go upstairs, but if I want to socialize I can stay downstairs. The general atmosphere is just so friendly and I have gotten to know a lot of the people here and join the community.”
Studying in this beautiful city of San Luis Obispo is no easy task, especially when the weather is perfect and the beach is calling your name. That is why Front Porch has, well, a front porch. Tables are located right outside under an overhang so you can sit outside and enjoy the gorgeous weather. Sometimes though, study breaks are necessary. Front Porch includes fun ways to decompress after a long day and relax with some friends. The game room has a pool table, record player and a TV with Netflix and a Wii console.
However, Front Porch is not only an excellent place to study because of it’s variety of rooms and study atmospheres, but it also a place to build community. Abby Eelsing loves this aspect of Front Porch. “Studying is a big part of it,” she said, “but Front Porch has become a place where you can go to see people. Everyone is so friendly. I go downstairs to do group work and busy work, but also to hang out.”
Carolynn Kern is a recent graduate of Cal Poly and now works as an intern at Front Porch.
“Porch is a place people come to feel accepted and that is what makes it unique. When you are comfortable and at rest you are more likely to retain information. There is also a sense of people wanting to help and a vibe of stewardship.”
Front Porch is entirely volunteer run and kept up by donations. 45% of funding comes from the Presbyterian Church of California and the rest is from private donors.
Other events at Front Porch include
- Friday open mic night
- Wednesday 6 p.m. free home-cooked dinner provided by First Presbyterian Church Slo
- Saturday 5 p.m. church gathering
- Reserve Front Porch for your own event
Try It Out
So now that you know a bit about Front Porch and all of its perks, head on over when you need to get some studying done, want a cup of coffee, or just to see what its all about. You won’t be disappointed.